Letters to The Editor: December 2-8, 2021


The Editor:
For 18 years I have had the privilege of working for the Thanksgiving Basket Program. This program would not be possible without the support of the following community members:
• The Northern Light has kept people’s attention by getting the word out each year and highlighting the importance of what we do for the community.
• All of the incredible donors, with their overwhelming generosity, is what keeps our program going strong.
• Edaleen Dairy is always willing to donate the milk we need – 230 gallons this year.
• Bedlington Farms has donated all the potatoes since I’ve been with the program – 1,200 pounds this year.
• Cost Cutter of Blaine including Mitch, Cindy, Stephen and Lance, ordered all needed groceries and had everything ready on time for pick up.
• My deepest thanks to Blaine Food Bank for picking up and delivering all 250 boxes and groceries as well. I don’t know how we would do it without their generous support.
• North Whatcom Fire and Rescue, under the direction of Mike Nelson, are instrumental in making this event possible. They pick up the milk at Edaleen’s and potatoes from Bedlington Farms and the crew does an amazing job of managing the carline on event day. Henry Hollander, a retired firefighter, still comes out each year and picks up turkeys at Costco and brings them to us on event day and personally delivers baskets to families who are unable to pickup. I am extremely grateful for all they do.
• Lastly, but most important, are my volunteers, the best in Whatcom County, generously giving their time to the event: Stuffing envelopes, bagging groceries, assembling and filling boxes, assisting with box distribution and all the organization and clean up involved. I must add a deeply heartfelt and special thank you to Jeff and Linda Johnston. Without their unending support, I could not get the job done.
This small group of individuals has helped give 1,239 adults and children in our community a very happy Thanksgiving this year.
Shirley Tobian
Thanksgiving Basket Program director

The Editor:
My concern regarding the upcoming redistricting of the Blaine school district’s board of directors revolves around the laws, both state and federal, which govern the process. 
The laws have been knowingly and deliberately ignored by the district for the last 20 years. It’s time for the Blaine school district and the board of directors to become law abiding citizens again.
The U.S. Supreme Court in Shaw v. Reno, 509 U.S. 630 (1993) was a landmark case in the area of redistricting and racial gerrymandering. Among other things, the court ruled 5-4 that bodies doing redistricting must be conscious to the extent that they must ensure compliance with the Voting Rights Act of 1965. The redistricting after the 2000 census is required to reflect population changes.
Redistricting must include the
1. Compactness
2. Contiguity
3. Equal population – based on the City of Blaine (CDP 2020 pop. 5,884) and the Birch Bay (CDP 2020 pop. 10,115); CDP is Census Designated Place
4. Preservation of existing political communities
5. Partisan fairness
6. Racial fairness
Washington state law RCW 29A.76.010(4) is very similar.
Kathy Berg


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